“I picked up a star whose tube feet ventured timidly among my fingers while, like a true star, it cried soundlessly for life. I saw it with an unaccustomed clarity and cast it far out.”
—Loren C. Eiseley, from The Star Thrower
Since I first documented the experiences contained in The Starfish Files, a number of readers have asked me if the story was inspired by another, older story about starfish. I didn’t know that story at the time, but I looked it up and it is worth recounting. The story is often told something as follows.
A man is walking down the beach one morning after a storm. The sea has cast flotsam high up the beach, and among the sea wrack there are hundreds and hundreds of starfish. Some have ...